“We who preach the gospel must not think of ourselves as public relations agents sent to establish good will between Christ and the world. We must not imagine ourselves commissioned to make Christ acceptable to big business, the press, the world of sports or modern education. We are not diplomats but prophets, and our message is not a compromise but an ultimatum.”
~ A.W. Tozer
Who doesn’t like Tozer? I like this quote because I grew up in churches where there seemed to be much effort expended in making the Gospel palatable to the unsaved. There seemed to be a hidden motive of not feeling accepted by the world because of our faith in Christ, but that if only the world could be wooed by the appearance or presentation of the Gospel, they would somehow find the messenger of the message worthy of their admiration and of their attention, and in turn, find the message worthy of their admiration and attention. It’s not that the motive was always bad. We wanted the Gospel to be embraced by the lost. That’s a worthy motive. However, we simply can never persuade or attract anyone to the Gospel by our efforts, our appearance, or our beautification efforts on behalf of God.
God in His infinite power raised Christ from the dead. The resurrection of Christ had nothing to do with the disciples making the cross into a palatable or even lovely piece of jewelry to be worn. There was no “resurrection tent meeting” with testimonies from attractive or famous disciples that caused God to resurrect Christ. God did not instruct the disciples to go to the tomb where the body of Jesus lay and to somehow beautify the situation and help Him find a way to bring about the resurrection of our Savior.
In the same way, resurrecting sinners to new life is not a by-product of the presentation of the Gospel. Resurrecting sinners is simply the work of God through the power of the Holy Spirit and the preaching of the Word, specifically of the Gospel message…the cross…which is foolishness to men, but the power of God to save. There is no glitzy half-time show in preaching the Gospel. There is only the expendable messenger with the in-expendable message, and the inexplicable power of God who raised Christ from the dead and who now raises sinners to new life.